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[bonz] /bɒnz/
a Buddhist monk, especially of Japan or China.
Origin of bonze
1580-90; < Middle French < Portuguese bonzo or New Latin bonzius < Japanese bonsō, bonzō ordinary priest (bon- ordinary + priest < Middle Chinese, equivalent to Chinese fán-sēng); or < dialectal Japanese bonzu for bōzu priest Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for bonze
Historical Examples
  • In the eyes of the people Xavier was merely a new kind of bonze, and they listened to him with the greatest attention.

    The Jesuits, 1534-1921 Thomas J. Campbell
  • The bonze climbed into the tree and handed down the pears to the bystanders.

  • The first bonze who saw the Governor wished to run and warn his companions.

    Eastern Shame Girl Charles Georges Souli
  • When the bonze had begun to make his magic, the farmer, too, had mingled with the crowd.

  • The Second bonze, having a different object to attain, proceeded in a different manner.

  • And then he realized that the pear-tree which the bonze had chopped down must have been his axle.

  • Several days later I sailed, but during my stay I saw my venerable friend the bonze, no more.

    Nightmare Tales H. P. Blavatsky
  • "The bonze is generous, and his words are reasonable," said another.

    The War Tiger Wiliam Dalton
  • The holy man desires me to put you a question and give you at the same time a warning, remarked the bonze.

    Nightmare Tales H. P. Blavatsky
  • "These are dog's words, thou rogue of a bonze," said the boy.

    The War Tiger Wiliam Dalton
British Dictionary definitions for bonze


a Chinese or Japanese Buddhist priest or monk
Word Origin
C16: from French, from Portuguese bonzo, from Japanese bonsō, from Sanskrit bon + priest or monk
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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